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John Hiller - HoFer?

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While I have never considered it but have always thought of him as a great reliever (once held the record for saves in a season - 38). The Detroit Athletic Blog spells out a very nice case why he should have got more consideration (very WAR heavy though). Off the top of my head, I cannot think of a better left handed relief pitcher. Aroldis Chapman maybe, too soon to say.

Great TTM signer also.

Discuss.

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Sparky Lyle.....

Sparky was indeed great and never once started a game in 16 years. In Lyle's Cy Young year, 1977, he finished 60 games, had 28 saves and 8 blown. His career WAR was 22.9 (top 3 yearly - 3.7, 3.5, 3.5). Hillers best year, 1973, he finished 4th in both Cy and MVP voting, finished 60 games, saved 38 and only blew 4. His career WAR is 31.2 (top 3 yearly - 8.1, 4.1, 4.1)

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Tug McGraw was pretty good....Mitch Williams was decent for a few..as was Willie Hernandez. You're right though...There really aren't a lot of great or even good LH closers....took me awhile to come up with another after Lyle.

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I love John Hiller. He was a great guy to root for when I was a kid, and he held the saves record for a long time. I got a hit off him, hitting right-handed, at Tiger fantasy camp. Or more likely, he grooved one over the plate and let me get a hit off him. Chit-chatted with him. Great guy.

John Hiller is not a Hall of Famer. Not even close.

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I'll never forget the year he went 17-14 as a reliever.

I'll never forget the years I didn't see him pitch, which is all of them.

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You would have liked Hiller. It was a great story how he recovered from a heart attack and became the best reliever in the game for a while. I also liked how relievers were used back then. He pitched 150 innings in 59 appearances in '74.

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You would have liked Hiller. It was a great story how he recovered from a heart attack and became the best reliever in the game for a while. I also liked how relievers were used back then. He pitched 150 innings in 59 appearances in '74.

So if you break it down, teams are arguing that if they have a couple of hundred high leverage innings to work, instead of having your best one or two guys pitch them going multiple innings but seldom back to back, they would rather include their 3rd and 4th or deeper relievers in higher leverage games as well but hold everyone to one inning, often back to back, on the theory that your 4th pitcher can be as effective as your 2nd best if he only has to work one inning and so goes 'harder'.

Maybe the teams are right, but one problem is that it has been a devil's bargain for the pitchers, with relief pitchers now suffering over-use arm injuries (UCL failure) at comparable or worse rates than starters despite their ever decreasing total workload. 24 hrs rest does not appear to be enough even for under 20 pitch counts when they are at >100% effort.

Edited by Gehringer_2

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So if you break it down, teams are arguing that if they have a couple of hundred high leverage innings to work, instead of having your best one or two guys pitch them going multiple innings but seldom back to back, they would rather include their 3rd and 4th or deeper relievers in higher leverage games as well but hold everyone to one inning, often back to back, on the theory that your 4th pitcher can be as effective as your 2nd best if he only has to work one inning and so goes 'harder'.

Maybe the teams are right, but one problem is that it has been a devil's bargain for the pitchers, with relief pitchers now suffering over-use arm injuries (UCL failure) at comparable or worse rates than starters despite their ever decreasing total workload. 24 hrs rest does not appear to be enough even for under 20 pitch counts when they are at >100% effort.

What strikes me is that teams have one set of pitches who are expected to pitch 6+ innings per appearance and another set that is expected to pitch one inning per appearance. It just seems strange that are so few pitchers which fall between these two extremes. Shouldn't there be another set of pitchers who are optimally used say three innings at a time?

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What strikes me is that teams have one set of pitches who are expected to pitch 6+ innings per appearance and another set that is expected to pitch one inning per appearance. It just seems strange that are so few pitchers which fall between these two extremes. Shouldn't there be another set of pitchers who are optimally used say three innings at a time?

I'm tempted to call that a 'continuous variable' scold....

:laugh:

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You would have liked Hiller. It was a great story how he recovered from a heart attack and became the best reliever in the game for a while. I also liked how relievers were used back then. He pitched 150 innings in 59 appearances in '74.

I hope that is the next revolution in baseball. Relievers pitching multiple innings. Maybe pitching well enough to go through an entire lineup at least once. Maybe a manager realizing that if the 7th inning guy is pitching well enough, he might able to handle the 8th as well.

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I hope that is the next revolution in baseball. Relievers pitching multiple innings. Maybe pitching well enough to go through an entire lineup at least once. Maybe a manager realizing that if the 7th inning guy is pitching well enough, he might able to handle the 8th as well.

I think starters will be throwing fewer innings since they tend to do worse each time through the line-up. We might see more three to five inning starts over time and perhaps some relievers will have to pitch multiple innings so teams won't run out of relievers.

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I think starters will be throwing fewer innings since they tend to do worse each time through the line-up. We might see more three to five inning starts over time and perhaps some relievers will have to pitch multiple innings so teams won't run out of relievers.

I remember Tony LaRussa trying this during one of the lean seasons in Oakland. He structured the pitching staff such that there was a three game rotation with three pitchers per game that each threw three innings, and then an extra reliever or two (maybe a closer and a mop up guy). I don't think it lasted very long.

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I remember Tony LaRussa trying this during one of the lean seasons in Oakland. He structured the pitching staff such that there was a three game rotation with three pitchers per game that each threw three innings, and then an extra reliever or two (maybe a closer and a mop up guy). I don't think it lasted very long.

I don't think it will ever reach the point where a team can do that with the entire rotation. There will always be pitchers that pitch 7+ innings, but I can see the #4 and #5 spots on a staff being split up some.

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You would have liked Hiller. It was a great story how he recovered from a heart attack and became the best reliever in the game for a while. I also liked how relievers were used back then. He pitched 150 innings in 59 appearances in '74.

Bill Campbell pitched 317 innings in 147 games in a two year period with the Twins and Bosox. He went 31-14 with 51 saves. Then his arm pretty much fell off . He managed to hang around another decade or so, but he wasn't the same.

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Bill Campbell pitched 317 innings in 147 games in a two year period with the Twins and Bosox. He went 31-14 with 51 saves. Then his arm pretty much fell off . He managed to hang around another decade or so, but he wasn't the same.

Their arms fall off today too. I don't really see evidence that there are fewer injuries to pitchers today with lighter usage.

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I am not 100% sure, but I am pretty sure Bill James studied injury rates for 70's relievers and concluded there was no evidence how they were used led to more injuries than how relievers were used in the 90's.

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I am not 100% sure, but I am pretty sure Bill James studied injury rates for 70's relievers and concluded there was no evidence how they were used led to more injuries than how relievers were used in the 90's.

depending on how 'no evidence of more' breaks down in detail, that seems like it could be a significant result. If you are using your best relief pitchers less but they are not getting injured less that seems like a losers bargain. It all goes back to the supposition that the same guy is going to have a lower ERA throwing 15 pitches two two days in a row as opposed to throwing 40-45 one day with a day or two off. I don't know how you prove that.

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Their arms fall off today too. I don't really see evidence that there are fewer injuries to pitchers today with lighter usage.

Did not suggest nor state any thing of the kind....simply marvelling at the workload Campbell carried. It

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Did not suggest nor state any thing of the kind....simply marvelling at the workload Campbell carried. It

OK, Sorry. How about Mike Marshall - 106 appearances and 208 innings in 1974. The Tigers could have used him last year.

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